Lighthouses of Finland: Lakes

Finland has coastlines facing south on the Gulf of Finland and west on the Gulf of Bothnia, both arms of the Baltic Sea. Finland also administers the Åland Islands (Ahvenanmaa), an archipelago at the junction of the two gulfs. After centuries of rule by Sweden, Finland was conquered by Russia in 1809 and became an autonomous grand duchy within the Russian Empire. The country declared its independence from Russia in 1917, at the start of the Russian Revolution.

Finland has a large number of lakes and inland waterways, and there are lighthouses on many of the larger lakes. I am indebted to Michel Forand for researching and locating many of these lights. Unfortunately, we have no light list for the country's inland waterways, so data on the characteristics of the lights is not available. No doubt there are more lighthouses to be discovered on Finnish lakes.

Aids to navigation in Finland are maintained by the Maritime Sector of the Finnish Transport Safety Agency (Trafi). The Finnish word for a lighthouse is majakka (plural majakat); saari is an island and järvi is a lake. Swedish is a second official language in Finland, and some Finnish lighthouses are commonly known by their Swedish names.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights.

General Sources
Lighthouses in Finland
Photos available from Wikimedia.
Finland - World of Lighthouses
Photos available from Lightphotos.net.
Finnish Lighthouse Society
The national lighthouse preservation association.

Oulunpäa Light
Oulunpää Light, Saimaa, July 2008
Panoramio photo copyright mi16; used by permission

Saimaa Lighthouses
Note: Saimaa, the largest lake in Finland and the fourth largest lake in Europe, is located in the southeast of the country near the Russian border. Unlike the nearby Russian lakes Ladoga and Onega, Saimaa is not a single open body of water; it is an intricate system of waterways with numerous branches. Pihlajavesi and Haapaselkä are portions of the Lake Saimaa system northeast of Puumala. The lake drains naturally to Lake Ladoga via the Vuoksi River. For navigation, the Saimaa Canal connects the lake more directly to the Baltic at Vyborg, Russia. (The portion of the canal in Russia is leased to Finland by an agreement extending to 2063.)
Papinsaari
Date unknown. Active; white, red or green light depending on direction. 6 m (20 ft) octagonal white concrete tower with a pyramidal base. Petri Laitinen has a view from the lake, and Google has a distant satellite view. This light is located on the northwestern side of Paasselkä, a circular basin of the upper lake about 10 km (6 mi) in diameter, confirmed in 1999 to be a 200 million year old meteor crater. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed.
Torakkaluoto
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 3 m (10 ft); light characteristic unknown. 4 m (13 ft) iron lantern, painted white, mounted on a stone pier. A photo is available, and Google has a distant satellite view. Located on the west side of a narrow passage between two basins of the lake about 10 km (6 mi) northwest of Savonlinna. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed.
Ilokallio Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 5 m (17 ft); two quick white flashes every 3 s. 6 m (20 ft) octagonal lantern mounted on a round stone base. Lantern painted white, base painted with black and white vertical stripes. Google has an indistinct satellite view. Located on a small island in the approach to Savonlinna from the north. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed (private property).
* Savonlinna
Date unknown. Probably inactive. 4 m (13 ft) iron lantern, painted white, mounted on a concrete pad. Dmitry Rostopshin has a photo, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. The lantern was probably relocated to this position for display. Located on the grounds of the Savonlinna Provincial Museum on Riihisaari island in Savonlinna. Site open, tower closed.
Varisluoto
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 5 m (17 ft); light characteristic unknown. 7 m (23 ft) octagonal lantern mounted on a stone pier. Lantern painted white, pier painted with black and white vertical stripes. A closeup photo is at right, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. The light marks the beginning of the approach to Savonlinna from the south, about 5 km (3 mi) south of the city. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed.
Tuoliluoto
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 8 m (26 ft); light characteristic unknown. 5 m (17 ft) octagonal lighthouse mounted on a round stone base. Lighthouse painted white. A photo is available, and Google has a distant satellite view. Located on an island in a narrow passage of the lake about 30 km (19 mi) southwest of Savonlinna. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed.
Varisluoto Light
Varisluoto Light, Saimaa, July 2008
Panoramio photo copyright mi16; used by permission
Lehtosaari
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 6 m (20 ft); light characteristic unknown. 8 m (26 ft) round lantern mounted on a round stone or concrete pier. Lighthouse painted white. A photo is available, and Google has a fuzzy satellite view. Located on an island in a north-south reach of the lake about 15 km (9 mi) southeast of Sulkava. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed.
Oulunpää
Date unknown. Active; white, red or green light depending on direction. 6 m (20 ft) octagonal cylindrical tower with lantern and gallery, painted white; the directional light is now mounted atop the lantern. A photo is at the top of this page, another photo is available, and Bing has a distant satellite view. The light marks a narrow passage near a right-angled bend in the lake. Located in the Pihlajavesi portion of Saimaa on the southeastern coast of the island of Oulunsaari. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed.
Vuoriluoto
Date unknown. Active; light characteristic unknown. 6 m (20 ft) square pyramidal solid concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. Juha Meriluoto has a photo, a second photo and another closeup are available, and the light is barely visible in a Google satellite view. Located on the north end of an island in Haapaselkä about 12 km (7.5 mi) northeast of Puumala. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed.
Puumala
Date unknown. Active; white, red or green light depending on direction. 6 m (20 ft) octagonal cylindrical tower with gallery, painted white. Lantern removed. The lighthouse stands on a square pier painted white with a black vertical stripe on each face. Riku Kettunen's photo is at right, a second photo and a view from the lake are available, and Google has a very distant satellite view. Located on the west side of Haapaselkä about 2.5 km (1.5 mi) northeast of Puumala. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed.
Rehusaari (Saukionniemi)
Date unknown (station established 1885 as Saukionniemi). Active; characteristics unknown. 4 m (13 ft) octagonal lantern mounted on a square concrete base. Lantern painted white; base painted with black and white vertical stripes. A photo is available, and the light is barely visible in Google's satellite view. Located on a small island off the northeast side of the island of Kyläniemi in the southern portion of Saimaa. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed.
Puumala Light
Puumala Light, Saimaa, July 2011
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Riku Kettunen
Rastiluoto
Date unknown. Active; white, red or green light depending on direction. 4 m (13 ft) octagonal lantern mounted on an octagonal concrete base; the directional light is now mounted atop the lantern. Lantern painted white; base painted with black and white vertical stripes. A photo and a second photo are available, but the light is not seen in Google's satellite view. Located on a small island in the Taipalsaari municipality, on a part of Lake Saimaa known as Riutanselkä, about 15 km (9 mi) northwest of Lapeenrenta. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed.

Päijänne Lighthouses
Note: Päijänne is Finland's second largest lake, some 120 km (75 mi) in length, extending southward from Jyväskylä, the capital of the Central Finland region. It is the principal water source for Helsinki, the national capital. The lake drains through the Kymi River to the Gulf of Finland near Kotka.
* Haikka
Date unknown. Active; characteristics unknown. 4 m (13 ft) octagonal lantern, painted white and mounted on a concrete pier atop a large boulder. A photo and a second photo are available, and Google has a satellite view. Located on a gravel bar sheltering the harbor of Haikka, a village about 20 km (13 mi) south of Jyväskylä on the west side of the lake. Site open, tower closed.
Judinsalo
Date unknown. Active; characteristics unknown. 8 m (26 ft) octagonal cylindrical tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. The light carries automated weather instruments. The Finnish Meteorological Institute has a small photo, and Bing has a distant satellite view. Located on a small island east of Lahtela in the central portion of the lake. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed.
Tehinsilmä
Date unknown. Active; characteristics unknown. 9 m (30 ft) square pyramidal concrete pier with lantern and gallery; access to the light is by an external stairway. Lighthouse painted white. Jouni Klinga has a fine closeup, and a 2008 photo is available, but the location is only a blur in Google's satellite view. Located on a rock called Mustalaisluoto, on the SE side of Tehinkärki Point near Kuhmoinen. Accessible only by boat. Site open, and anyone can climb the stairs.
* Pulkkilanharju
Date unknown. Active; characteristics unknown. 10 m (33 ft) square cylindrical concrete tower with a large round lantern and gallery, painted white. Tanja Näätänen's photo is at right, a closeup photo and another photo are available, and Google has a street view and an indistinct satellite view. Pulkkilanharju is an 8 km (5 mi) long ridge that crosses the southern part of the lake. Highway 314 uses the ridge and several bridges to make the same crossing. Located beside highway 314 near a bridge crossing a gap in the ridge. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS FIN-084.

Vesijärvi Lighthouse
Note: Vesijärve is a smaller lake south of Päijänne but connected to Päijänne by a short canal. The city of Lahti is at the south end of Vesijärvi.
* Lahti Pierhead
Date unknown. Active; characteristics unknown. 6 m (20 ft) square tower with lantern topped by a windvane. Stephen Harris has a closeup photo, a 2010 photo and a second photo are available, Miguel Virkkunen Carvalho has an early spring photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the main quay of Lahti cruisesdepart from this pier. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed.

Pulkkilanharju Light, Päijänne, July 2008
Flickr photo copyright Tanja Näätänen; used by permission

Keitele Lighthouse
Note: Keitele is a lake north of Jyväskylä in central Finland.
Tallisaari (Suolahti)
Date unknown. Active; characteristics unknown. 7 m (23 ft) octagonal cylindrical tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. A photo and a second photo are available, and Bing has a distant satellite view. Located on a small island in the harbor of Suolahti, the town at the south end of the lake. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed.

Näsijärvi Lighthouses
Note: Näsijärvi, a lake in southwestern Finland, is about 40 km (25 mi) in length north to south and has a normal elevation of 95 m (312 ft) above sea level. Tampere, the largest city of inland Finland, is located at the south end of the lake.
Teisko (Tesikola)
Date unknown. Active; characteristics unknown. 5 m (17 ft) octagonal cast iron tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. A photo and a second photo are available. Google has a distant satellite view of this area, but the exact location of the lighthouse is not known. Located near Teisko, a town on a northeastern arm of the lake. Site open, tower closed.
Siilinkari
Date unknown. Active; characteristics unknown. 6 m (20 ft) square pyramidal tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. A photo is at right, Antti Kivivalli has a closeup photo, Petri Sirkkala has a photo, a portfolio of photos is available, and Bing has a satellite view. Located on a small island in the lake about 1.3 km (0.8 mi) north of the Tampere waterfront. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed.
Siilinkari Light
Siilinkari Light, Tampere, March 2006
Wikimedia public domain photo by Zacce

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: East: Lake Ladoga | South: Southern Finland | West: Western Finland

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Posted March 2, 2010. Checked and revised May 11, 2014. Lighthouses: 20. Site copyright 2014 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.